I’m Only Half-Serious

September 29, 2012 at 7:36 am Leave a comment

“I’d like to order a whole chicken,” I said to the man behind the counter at the barbeque restaurant.

“Sorry, dude,” he replied. “We don’t have whole chickens.”

“Oh, okay. Well, what should I get for a family of four?”

“How about two half-chickens.”

Riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight.

So I wrote a letter to the manager at Red Hot & Blue:

To Whom It May Concern,

Please be advised that two halves equal one whole.

Sincerely,
A Mathematically Literate Customer

Of course, there are those who could be convinced that 1 = 1/2. Let a = b. Then,

a2 = ab
a2b2 = abb2
(a + b)(ab) = b(ab)
a + b = b
a + a = a
2a = a
2 = 1
2 ÷ 2 = 1 ÷ 2
1 = 1/2

A lot of confusion about halves and wholes occurs in classrooms, too.

Teacher: Who can give me some examples of whole numbers?
Student: 0, 6, 8, 9.
Teacher: What about 10?
Student: That’s only a half-whole, since 1 doesn’t have a hole in it.

Entry filed under: Uncategorized. Tags: , , .

Brew Me a Cup! Book Review: The Joy of x

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Trackback this post  |  Subscribe to the comments via RSS Feed


About MJ4MF

The Math Jokes 4 Mathy Folks blog is an online extension to the book Math Jokes 4 Mathy Folks. The blog contains jokes submitted by readers, new jokes discovered by the author, details about speaking appearances and workshops, and other random bits of information that might be interesting to the strange folks who like math jokes.

MJ4MF (offline version)

Math Jokes 4 Mathy Folks is available from Amazon, Borders, Barnes & Noble, NCTM, Robert D. Reed Publishers, and other purveyors of exceptional literature.

Past Posts

September 2012
M T W T F S S
« Aug   Oct »
 12
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930

Enter your email address to subscribe to the MJ4MF blog and receive new posts via email.

Join 246 other followers

Visitor Locations

free counters

%d bloggers like this: